(as recorded - typos included)
Shreve had its beginning with the coming of the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1853.A small settlement had been started south of Shreve, which is now known as Centerville, but in the early days was known as Stuckeytown, having been named for Stuckey Robinson. The name was changed to Centerville in 1850.
As it was for the railroad to have a suitable place to obtain water and fuel, the present site of Shreve was chosen due to the large spring known as Stouts near Bald hill and wood was also very plentiful.
Stuckeytown had several dwellings and business places as it developed quite rapidly prior to 1853.The residents insisted on having the railroad station established on the summit just north of Stuckeytown, but the railroad agent at Loudonville, George Stewart, used his influence to have the depot built in Shreve.It was located on the east side of North Market Street,A large shed for housing wood for locomotives was built on the west side.This was moved later and the present depot was built in 1878.The old town pump stood near the wood shed at the depot and residents carried water from there.
Mr. DeWolfe was the first station agent.Amoung others were S.B. Kenton, William Oliver, James Harrington, C.C. Leyda, C.P. Kindig, Charles Mayer, L.E. Bowman and C.P. Kindig who was returned here and has served 14 years.
The Stuckeytown merchants became very discouraged and decided to sell their land regardless of cost and "get out" they did.Amoung these families were D.K. Jones, who had a general store; Town Yates, a wagon shop; W.J. Bertolette, a tailor; and John Cameron & James Ewing, a shoe shop.Carpenters were WIley Porter, James Hall, Daniel Batdorf, and Nathan Gorsach.
Thomas Shreve, who owned 1400 acres of land in Clinton township, was president of the convention at Wooster when Wayne County threw its influence back of the railroad project.It was slowly built and on August 10, 1852 the first west-bound train came into Wooster.
This town was then named Clinton Station by George Stewart but due to another town in Ohio by this name there was much confusion with freight and mail.Residents decided the name must be changed and it was put to a vote whether it would be "Shreve" or "Jones".The name "Shreve" won by one vote.
David Foltz and George Stewart owned an undivided 10 acres north of the railroad and D.K. Jones bought ten acres on the south side from Thomas McConckey.It was on these two ten acre plots that the first lots of Shreve were laid out while covered with six inches of snow.The land north of the tracks was woods and on the south side were many swamps, willow trees, and a meadow.
Stewart planned to make Robinson Street the principal business district but Mr. Jones decided to have it runing north and south on what we now call Market Street.
The building of the town hall was getting well under way in the early part of 1853.Neal Powers had started a little store "in the woods".Jones built a storehouse and dwellings where the Neikirk store is located; Powers built a home where Mr. and Mrs. Johnston lived before it was destroyed by fire; Christian Roth built the first hotel which was managed by Mrs. W.H. McMonigal and Jones built a home in 1854.
There was much discussion before the incorporation and following is a speech given by Jack Crossman in John Williams' Shoe Store on August 31, 1859.
Mr. President. -- As I have been called upon to address this respectable assembly, I feel that it is my duty and the duty of each and every one interested to say a few words on this all important subject in reference to our becoming incorporated.I shall endeavor to make my remarks brief in order that all present may express their personal feeling.In the first place, allow me to congratulate and return my sincere thanks in behalf of those present, to the committee appointed at our last meeting for its sucess in obtaining free good will of those respectable gentlemen to unite with us in giving us a potion of their land to assist with squaring the boundaries of the incorporation and the liberal donations towards our school building.These were some few who claim that we are to hastey in wishing to become incorporated.Cast an eye for a moment over our town and see the great increase in buildings and population for a few years back in spite of hard times.Is there not a vast change.This is a fast age,and we are improving; and I say, that it is right that we should keep up with the improvements of the town by incorporating which will increase the value of the surronding country.When work of incorporation is over it will be expected of every property-holder within its limits to contribute his mite in some shape toward our projected school building, although a great many are like myself, poor, but every little bit will help.So do what you can, it the incorporation doesn't repay us as we anticipate our children may do so, as, by having a school here, they will lose no time and be well educated, and grow up to be leading men in our society; and,who knows but what, at some future day, be amoungst our leaders and statesmen,Then let us join hand in hand, as men and brethern, and look to our future prosperity that our children may have the privilege of trying repay us in our old age, and, if we fail, it will be a consolatin to our hearts to know that we have done our duty towards them.Gentlemen, in conclusion, I hope that the few words I have uttered tonight may prove a corner stone of our village, Clinton.
Shreve was incorporated as a village on December 26, 1859.Citizens most instrumental in the enterprise were Albert Richardson, V.D. Manson, D.K. Jones, John Robinson, Joseph Dyarman, and William Batdorf.
The first election of village officers was held at the hotel of Captain W.H. McMonigal on March 10, 1860 with these results; Mayor, V.D. Manson; Recorder, William M. Knox; Trustees, D.K. Jones, John Robinson, Joseph Dyarman, James Taylor and William Johnson.
More history of the early years of Shreve is available in the book just cited.this book is entitled, "History of Shreve and Community, 1853 - 1953".You can contact the County Line Historical Society for availability.